Thursday, May 31, 2012

Tips to treat kidney stones

A kidney stone is a hard, crystalline mineral material formed within the kidney or urinary tract. Nephrolithiasis is the medical term for kidney stones. Symptoms of a kidney stone include flank pain (which can be quite severe) and blood in the urine (hematuria).
Kidney stones form when there is a decrease in urine volume and/or an excess of stone-forming substances in the urine. Dehydration is a major risk factor for kidney stone formation. People with certain medical conditions, such as gout, and those who take certain medications or supplements are at risk for kidney stones. 

Dietary and hereditary factors are also related to stone formation. Diagnosis of kidney stones is best accomplished using a CT scan. Most kidney stones will pass through the ureter to the bladder on their own with time. Treatment includes pain control medications and, in some cases, medications to facilitate the passage of urine. If needed, lithotripsy or surgical techniques may be used for stones which do not pass through the ureter to the bladder on their own.

Kidney Stones Symptoms and Signs

While some kidney stones may not produce symptoms (known as "silent" stones), people who have kidney stones often report the sudden onset of excruciating, cramping pain in their low back and/or side, groin, or abdomen. Changes in body position do not relieve this pain. The abdominal, groin, and/or back pain typically waxes and wanes in severity, characteristic of colicky pain (the pain is sometimes referred to as renal colic).

It may be so severe that it is often accompanied by nausea and vomiting. The pain has been described by many as the worst pain of their lives, even worse than the pain of childbirth or broken bones. Kidney stones also characteristically cause blood in the urine. If infection is present in the urinary tract along with the stones, there may be fever and chills. Sometimes, symptoms such as difficulty urinating, urinary urgency, penile pain, or testicular pain may occur due to kidney stones.

Kidney Stones Diagnosed:

The diagnosis of kidney stones is suspected when the typical pattern of symptoms is noted and when other possible causes of the abdominal or flank pain are excluded. Imaging tests are usually done to confirm the diagnosis. 

A helical CT scan without contrast material is the most common test to detect stones or obstruction within the urinary tract. Formerly, an intravenous pyelogram (IVP; an X-ray of the abdomen along with the administration of contrast dye into the bloodstream) was the test most commonly used to detect urinary tract stones, but this test has a greater risk of complications, takes longer, and involves higher radiation exposure than the non-contrasted helical CT scan. 

Helical CT scans have been shown to be a significantly more effective diagnostic tool than the IVP in the diagnosis of kidney or urinary tract stones.


In pregnant women or those who should avoid radiation exposure, an ultrasound examination may be done to help establish the diagnosis.
 

The Treatment for Kidney Stones: How long does it take to pass a kidney stone?

Most kidney stones eventually pass through the urinary tract on their own within 48 hours, with ample fluid intake. Ketorolac (Toradol), an injectable anti-inflammatory drug, and narcotics may be used for pain control when over-the-counter pain control medications are not effective. Intravenous pain medications can be given when nausea and vomiting are present.

Although there are no proven home remedies to dissolve kidney stones, home treatment may be considered for patients who have a known history of kidney stones. Since most kidney stones, given time, will pass through the ureter to the bladder on their own, treatment is directed toward control of symptoms. Home care in this case includes the consumption of plenty of fluids. Ibuprofen (Advil) may be used as an anti-inflammatory medication if there is no contraindication to its use. If further pain medication is needed, stronger narcotic pain medications may be recommended.

There are several factors which influence the ability to pass a stone. These include the size of the person, prior stone passage, prostate enlargement, pregnancy, and the size of the stone. A 4 mm stone has an 80% chance of passage while a 5 mm stone has a 20% chance. Stones larger than 9 mm-10 mm rarely pass without specific treatment.

Some medications have been used to increase the passage rates of kidney stones. These include calcium channel blockers such as nifedipine (Adalat, Procardia, Afeditab, Nifediac) and alpha blockers such as tamsulosin (Flomax). These drugs may be prescribed to some people who have stones that do not rapidly pass through the urinary tract.

For kidney stones that do not pass on their own, a procedure called lithotripsy is often used. In this procedure, shock waves are used to break up a large stone into smaller pieces that can then pass through the urinary system.

Surgical techniques have also been developed to remove kidney stones when other treatment methods are not effective. This may be done through a small incision in the skin (percutaneous nephrolithotomy) or through an instrument known as an ureteroscope passed through the urethra and bladder up into the ureter.

Follow this natural treament to treat and to prevent kidney stones! only as per your doctor advice, since depending upon the size the treatment differs, but it is natural completely safe!

Kidney Stones be Prevented:

  • Rather than having to undergo treatment, it is best to avoid kidney stones in the first place when possible. It can be especially helpful to drink more water, since low fluid intake and dehydration are major risk factors for kidney stone formation.

  • Depending on the cause of the kidney stones and an individual's medical history, dietary changes or medications are sometimes recommended to decrease the likelihood of developing further kidney stones. If one has passed a stone, it can be particularly helpful to have it analyzed in a laboratory to determine the precise type of stone so specific prevention measures can be considered.

  • People who have a tendency to form calcium oxalate kidney stones may be advised to limit their consumption of foods high in oxalate, such as spinach, rhubarb, Swiss chard, beets, wheat germ, and peanuts.

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